Method and Apparatus for Performing Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis of Wounds Using Spatially Structured Illumination
Background: Use of instruments to assess etiology and status of chronic wounds is still in an embryonic state. Clinicians rely primarily on clinical features such as wound size, location, depth, and infection in order to make treatment decisions regarding the patient care. Several array of medical devices under investigation for wound care include Doppler ultrasound, Doppler perfusion imaging, transcutaneous measurement of tissue oxygen and near-infrared spectroscopy. One common drawback to these techniques is the fact that they all rely on indirect measurements of tissue health status. A more direct indication of tissue health or metabolic status of tissues at a cellular level can be made by measuring local concentrations and oxygen saturation of hemoglobin in the capillary bed. Technology: Researchers at the University of California, Irvine have developed a technique for real-time in vivo measurement of both blood volume and cellular metabolism in skin tissue using diffuse optical spectroscopy via modulated imaging. This method can both quantitatively and qualitatively provide the clinician with tools to assess superficial wounds. Modulated imaging is a novel -non-contact optical imaging technology that has the unique capability of performing both diffuse optical tomography and rapid, wide-field quantitative mapping of tissue optical properties with a single measurement platform. Application: A non-contact imaging modality is preferred for practical use in medical clinics. DOS (Diffuse optical spectroscopy) imaging technologies have been developed and successfully applied to breast and brain tissue measurements but are too expensive and impractical for imaging superficial wounds. The modulated imaging method being investigated by UCI researchers is a DOS based technology ideal for imaging subsurface tissues. Applications include skin flap monitoring; burn wound management, diabetic ulcers, decubitis ulcers, and peripheral vascular disease monitoring.
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